Rock Star? OK, Whatever.
Rock Star: Supernova debuts on CBS July 5 and features some dozen hopefuls vying for a spot in an "all-star" band with Tommy Lee and ex-of-Metallica Jason Newstead; thanks, but no. But it will, far as I know, be the first show in TV history to feature someone who once told me to go fuck myself from the stage of a Dallas Observer Music Awards. Yup, here's wishing all the very best to former Little Sister Patrice Pike, the former EMI and Arista recording artist who broke Dallas' heart by moving to Austin many years ago and now finds herself vying for a spot in what sounds like the worst band concept since, well, INXS sold its soul for a lead singer during what turned out to be this series' first season. Not that I hold a grudge; it was 14 years ago when Pike made her proclamation from the Deep Ellum Live stage, and it so tickled one of the owners of the Observer's parent company he egged her on from the audience, so who's complaining? Really. Best of luck.
Turns out Pike isn't the only woman with local ties competing for a spot in the band: There's also Zayra Alvarez, whose Web site suggests she's too tired to even sit up to take a publicity photo, much less stand in the upright position. Alvarez, like Pike and most of the Rock Star wannabes, actually has something of a career going for her already, with an EP and full-length disc to her credit. Though she's signed to lcoal label Brando Records (owned by local music-scene fixtures Paul Nugent and Mike Swinford), the discs have received distribution through Sony's Spanish-language subsidiary, and they found a big fan in former Dallas Observer music editor Sarah Hepola, who invited Alvarez to perform at the 2005 Dallas Observer Music Awards, making her one more would-be Rock Star with DOMA ties. Said Sarah in her May 2005 wrap-up:
"Our first performer is Zayra Alvarez, a Puerto Rican-born singer-songwriter who plays occasionally in Deep Ellum. Last year, she put out a Spanish-language album, Ruleta, on Sony International. I became a fan after seeing her at the New Music Festival, where she won over the most cynical among us with a hip-shaking striptease of a Latin pop set. Her set is far more subdued this time--acoustic, lots of slow power ballads--but there's an accompanying video featuring her in a bra. Come on. You know you love it."
Says the Rock Star Web site of Alvarez and Pike and the rest of the contestants, which include two one-name performers (Magni and Dilana; and thanks for playing), they have "talent and desire oozing out of their pores." Yuck. --Robert Wilonsky